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2005-10-07
Polson, MT. Wal-Mart Wants Supercenter Next To "Old" Discount Store

Yet another example of mindless development comes to us via Polson, Montana, where local residents are nonplussed that Wal-Mart would propose closing down its existing store, just to build a supercenter three times bigger right next door. Seems wasteful to say the least, but Wal-Mart has closed down more than 700 discount stores since 1995, leaving hundreds of "dark stores" on the market. Here's a first-hand report from residents in Polson: "In the rural town of Polson, Montana, population 5,000 with a maximum potential draw of 15,000 ( our county only has 28,000 people)Wal-Mart wants to abandone a 50,000 square foot store and build a 156,000 square foot Super Center right next to it. Our town already has two 45,000 square foot grocery stores. Polson is only 50
miles from Kalispell and 70 miles from Missoula. Both of these cities are regional shopping centers with all the big box stores. Economically the numbers do not justify the store without several county businesses closing. They have a pre-application meeting with the City-County planning board on Tuesday October 11th
at 6PM at the Lake County Courthouse in Polson, MT. This is only an informational meeting and not a public hearing. Public hearings will follow. They need to have 28 acres rezoned from residential to commerical and annex the property into the city."

What you can do: For earlier stories about Wal-Mart's "drop a discount store" policy, search Newsflash by "dark stores." In 1996, Wal-Mart discount stores reached their high point of just over 1,900 stores. Today, the number of discount stores has fallen to below 1,300. Many of these stores sit on the market for years before being filled or torn down. No retailer has ever dumped so many stores on the landscape as Wal-Mart.










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

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